Acer Sees Shortage as Smartphone Demand Surges

By Reuters  |  Print this article Print

Unexpected high demand for new smartphones takes the industry by surprise and leaves it facing a shortage of product in the end-of-year holiday sales season.

A surge in demand for the latest smartphones has taken the industry by surprise and left it facing a shortage in the key end-of-year holiday sales season, a chief of Acer's cellphone unit said.

"The industry as a whole is struggling with supply. It is a bit of a scramble," Aymar de Lencquesaing told Reuters in an interview on Thursday.

Research firms have ramped up forecasts for 2010 smartphone sales and now expect the market to double from a year ago.

The fast sales growth is causing shortages of components, with manufacturers scrambling for parts such as phone screens.

Acer, the world's second-largest PC vendor, entered the smartphone industry last year. It will sell "a little bit under" one million phones this year, giving it market share of less than half a percent, de Lencquesaing said.

It aims to reach 6 percent of the market in 2014, which would mean selling 30 million smartphones.

Acer said it was looking to use other software platforms in its phones alongside Google's Android system.

"We like to look at open operating systems in this market -- then you have to look at Android, you have to look at Windows Phone 7 and you have to look at MeeGo," de Lencquesaing said.

"We will probably again have Windows Phones, under Windows Phone 7. There is room for more than one operating system."

MeeGo is a new smartphone platform, developed by Intel and Nokia, with phones using it expected to reach consumers next year.

(Editing by David Hulmes)